What Car? Car of the Year awards is the most respected UK acknowledgement of automotive excellence. Four models that fall under the Renault banner were thus rewarded this year.
The Renault ZOE has won its seventh consecutive What Car? Award, although this year’s award is more significant than last year’s price point win. This year it won both Best Electric Car title and Best Electric Car under £30 000. The current ZOE has a bigger battery which gives it a range of 310km in real driving conditions, about a third more than its predecessor. The interior has been significantly upgraded and it is now a much better drive, with crisp acceleration, accurate handling and a solid drive on the freeway. The Renault ZOE is not yet available in South Africa.
Sandero and Duster
Dacia won a double with the Sandero and the Duster, known in South Africa as the Renault Sandero and Duster of course.
The Sandero won the Best Small Car under £12 000 for the eighth consecutive time. This is no surprise, according to What Car? Editor Steve Huntington: “Yet again, nothing has emerged that can get close to the amount of car it offers for your money.”
The Duster won the award for Best Family SUV under £18 000 for the second year in a row. According to Huntingford: “Buyers who need a mid-size SUV rather than a small one to transport their family around and whose budget is tight, will love Dacia Duster… you get a huge amount of car for the money, with plenty of passenger space and a large boot.”
The Alpine A110 has won Sportscar of the Year for the second year in a row. Huntingford explains: “Key to the appeal of the reborn Alpine A110 is its featherweight construction; it weighs a whopping quarter of a tonne less than some rivals. That, in turn, means that its suspension doesn’t have to be overly stiff, its tyres especially wide nor its engine massively powerful for it to perform as well as it does. With steering that chatters continuously about the road’s surface and even reasonable running costs on its side, the A110 is simply unmatched among sports cars.
The Alpine (pronounced Alpeen) is a recently resurrected sports car from the Renault stable. It competes with the likes of the Toyota 86, Mazda MX-5 and Lotus Exige. The Alpine is not yet available in South Africa, but a right-hand drive is now available, so…?